Inhibition of low-density lipoprotein receptor degradation with a cyclic peptide that disrupts the homodimerization of IDOL E3 ubiquitin ligase
Cellular uptake of circulating cholesterol occurs via the low density lipoprotein receptor (LDLR). The E3 ubiquitin ligase IDOL is a mediator of LDLR degradation, with IDOL homodimerization thought to be required for its activity. To probe the possibility of modulating LDLR levels with an inhibitor of IDOL homodimerization, we screened a SICLOPPS library of 3.2 million cyclic peptides for compounds that disrupt this protein–protein interaction. We identified cyclo-CFFLYT as the lead inhibitor, and improved its activity through the incorporation of non-natural amino acids. The activity of the optimized cyclic peptide was assessed in hepatic cells, with a dose-dependent increase in LDLR levels observed in the presence of our IDOL homodimerization inhibitor.